The pilot, a fuel truck driver and a fuel depot manager are at
the center of an Italian government investigation into Saturday's
watery crash of a chartered Tuninter ATR-72. Thirteen people were
lost in the mishap.
The fact that both engines quit within minutes of each other has
led Italian investigators to focus on the fuel -- was there enough
in the tank? Was it contaminated?
Palermo's chief investigator, Piero Grasso, was reportedly
investigating the fuel truck operator as well as the head of the
fuel depot at Bari. Early indications were the truck fueled at
least five other aircraft before it fueled the ATR. No other
aircraft appeared to suffer problems related to impure fuel. Still,
the probe focused on whether impurities at the bottom of the fuel
truck's tank might have made it into the ATR's fuel tank.